Cheesy Baked Rigatoni with Pumpkin
- 1 pound rigatoni
- 6 cups tomato sauce, divided
- One 15-ounce container ricotta
- One 15-ounce container pumpkin puree
- 1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- ⅛ teaspoon grated nutmeg
- Black pepper
- 3 cups mozzarella cheese, about 16 ounces, cut into small cubes
- 2 pounds loose sweet Italian pork or chicken sausage, browned and drained on paper towel-lined plate
Preheat oven to 375˚F.
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Salt the water and add rigatoni. Cook about 3 minutes shy of package directions and drain, then pour pasta back into the pot. Mix with 5 cups tomato sauce.
In a bowl, combine ricotta, pumpkin puree, Parmigiano-Reggiano and nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper.
Mix in 2 cups mozzarella with the pasta.
In a 9-by-13-inch baking dish, pour in the remaining 1 cup tomato sauce and spread across the bottom. Add half the pasta to the dish, and sprinkle with half the sausage. Using a spatula, spread half the pumpkin ricotta mixture on top. Repeat with the remaining pasta, sausage and pumpkin ricotta mixture, then top with the remaining 1 cup mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake 20 minutes, then uncover and bake 20 minutes more, or until browned on top and bubbling around the edge.
Check out the video below!
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